Stella, the innocent, mischievous Lagotto Romagnolo, sadly missed

My condolences go to Christine, Tim and Stella’s other companions – Joey, Coco, Magic, Gibbston and Clyde. She will be sadly missed.

She eyed me warily as I entered her house.  It was the eyes I first noticed about Stella, they contained a hint of fear.

But as she saw me accepted by her other family members they changed to an intelligent mischievous look.

Stella, the Lagotto Romagnolo puppy
Stella – the puppy

I knew I had become part of her family when she presented me with one of my socks.  Thus, I learnt to keep my small clothing items safely away from Stella and she would bring me her duckie instead.

Stella and her animal cohort were my housesit family in November 2016.  She was a Lagotto Romagnolo – an Italian water dog.  Stella absolutely loved the water and regularly visited the Lower Shotover River where she would swim and chase sticks.  The temperature of the water was not a factor in whether she was in or out of the water.

Cream of a Joey
Brown of a Coco
Under the dogwood a Stella doth lay
Upon a bed of petals a pink
Swathed within a linen a white
She rested
No more the Shotover Lagotto will play


Stella was young and athletic, loved to hunt and chase the abundant rabbit population of Queenstown.  It was the love of the rabbit hunt that was the end of Stella – the best exploring spot was the gully across the road.  The lure of the rabbit hunt was too much for Stella one day.  Jumping the fence from her orchard enclosure, she bolted down the driveway and into the path of an oncoming car as she crossed the road.

Joey sitting on an outside table waiting for Stella
The day Stella was hit, Joey sat all afternoon on the table looking at the road – waiting for Stella to come home

Christine and Tim gave Stella the best chance for a recovery but the injuries were too much and they decided to let Stella pass on.  Stella was a loyal and loving dog once she let you into her circle.

My condolences go to Christine, Tim and Stella’s other companions – Joey, Coco, Magic, Gibbston and Clyde.  She will be sadly missed.

this picture shows Stella's grave, a dug hole in ground with a carpet of rose petals
Stella’s grave was carpeted with rose petals

this picture shows Karen and Stella, Lagotto Romagnolo, enjoying the sun in the dog run

Stage 2 de-clutter – the patchwork goes

I am ready for more de-cluttering. I can let go of my fabric and colours

It is time.  I am ready.  I now know that I do not need all that fabric – truly.  Yes, it is beautiful but it has been superfluous for many years now and someone else can add it to their collection or perhaps they may even cut it into little bits and sew them back together again. Continue reading “Stage 2 de-clutter – the patchwork goes”

on my book shelf is “Dear World, how are you?”

This is an amazing story of a small boy’s quest “to write to somebody in every country in the world, to learn about the world, help people understand each other and make the world a better place”

I first saw “Dear World, How are you? in the Nelson library (libraries are good places to visit when you’re new to an area.  They are abundant on local information).  Displayed with the new books, the byline read “The true story of a little boy on a big quest” – how could I resist? Continue reading “on my book shelf is “Dear World, how are you?””

Poppy, a Guide Dog, remembered

A story about a guide dog.
Please help support Team Guide Dogs in the Auckland Round the Bays 2017

She was born on 3 September 1992 at the Guide Dog Breeding and Training Centre at Homai, South Auckland, a black bundle of fluff, from a litter of nine pups.  As a pup, she met up with her Puppy Walkers in Henderson and guide dog training began. Continue reading “Poppy, a Guide Dog, remembered”

top of the stairs are Fine Arts in Oamaru

the historic precinct in Oamaru is home to some fine old buildings which are now a home to Home Gallery Fine Art

The building was made of Oamaru stone.  It was impressive on the corner of Harbour and Wansbeck St.
this picture shows the stairs and the barrel at the top of the Home Gallery Fine Arts.The stairs were well trodden in the 134-year-old building.  The 25 steps indicated the generous height of each level.  A smooth handrail confirmed that many people had ventured up these stairs.

The room at the top of the stairs was empty and capacious except for the desk.  In the middle of the space was the grain elevator from the years when Wool and Grain were stored in this warehouse.  The wooden structure of the building was obvious and expansive.  The tall arched windows looked out to the bay. Continue reading “top of the stairs are Fine Arts in Oamaru”

on my bookshelf is Hitman Anders and the meaning of it all

A bit of humour and satire in this book about a homeless receptionist, an atheist priest and a criminal with a heart

I enjoyed the “100-year-old man who climbed out a window and disappeared by the same author so I decided to read another book by Jonas Jonasson.  Jonas writes books with a quirky style and a large sprinkle of satire.  Hitman Anders and the meaning of it all has unexpected turns until you start to catch on to Jonas’s story telling style. Continue reading “on my bookshelf is Hitman Anders and the meaning of it all”

I leave the South Island … for now

Farewell Te Wai Pounamu, it is with sadness that I leave

Yesterday morning I left.  I had followed the Picton detour signs, a reminder of an earthquakes capability, and was on the 0215 ferry to Wellington and then homeward(?) bound to Auckland.  I have spent most of 2016 with you and have grown to love who you are. Continue reading “I leave the South Island … for now”